Dr. Mayra Padilla holds a bachelor’s degree in applied physics from UC Davis and a doctorate in neuroscience from UC Berkeley. She has worked as a neuroscientist at the San Francisco Brain Institute, SRI International (formerly the Stanford Research Institute) and Sands Research Inc. As a result of seeing too few Latinx and black scientists, Dr. Padilla returned home to take on the role of director for the Hispanic Serving Institution's Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics and Articulation (HSI STEM) Program at Contra Costa College (CCC) to encourage students of color to pursue careers in STEM. She is currently the dean of institutional effectiveness & equity at CCC.